By Owen Mandovha
Diamond mining firms are undertaking various initiatives from exploration to expansion to drive the US$1 billion diamond mining target by 2023.
However, despite a huge natural endowment of diamonds reserves, the diamond mining sector’s contribution to economic transformation has largely been minimal owing to a myriad of production and marketing challenges.
Government says the major diamond producers, namely the Zimbabwe Consolidated Mining Company, Alrosa, Murkowski Diamonds and Anjin, are shifting focus to reach the 10 million carats annual production target.
“Alrosa has completed exploration in the Mwenezi project, which is going enhance production prospects, while Murowa Diamonds is undertaking a US$450 million expansion underground mining for kimberlite diamonds. ZCDC production has gone up to around four million carats, which is a big feat by a single company,” noted Dr Polite Kambamura, Deputy Minister of Mines and Mining Development.
10 million carats generate the US$1 billion diamond sector contribution to the US$12 billion mining vision by 2023.
“ZCDC is the key player in the industry and it has undergone major reforms. We underpin its future production efficiency to the company’s management and recently a new board was appointed to drive the company’s growth strategy,” he added.
Government has so far surpassed the halfway mark of the US$12 billion mining industry target which only three years ago stood at over US$3 billion, as the mining sector’s transformation continues on the back of positive reforms which have attracted massive investment in the industry.